For the first time since 2018’s Obscene, metalcore group Amongst the Giants has graced the scene with a new jam: “Black Box.” Fortunately, the time between has only served to improve what was already tight musicianship.
Marco Pera’s guitar work is paired perfectly with the frenetic delivery of Brian Boyd’s vocals. Overall, the sound of this single is more polished than their 2018 outing: the cleans are crisper and the harsh vocals somehow sound more raw, while refined. The guitars have a crunch and gusto to them with a drumming presence that feels perfectly punctuated. Everything is working together in this track, and it feels like it was effortlessly done. There is a desperation felt through the musicality of this song that never relents, perfectly fitting with the theme of internal anguish. Raw, yet refined; crunchy, but smooth; aggression meets torment.
Lyrically exploring the hopelessness of mental illness, this track is quite bleak. It is an honest depiction of what many feel as they struggle to live mentally healthy lives. Whether stemming from anxiety, depression, or any other source of mental anguish, Amongst the Giants does an exceptional job of illustrating the pain of being trapped in one’s own mind. “Nervous feelings in my head, pushing me to the edge of my seat every time I look over my shoulder… Claustrophobic, I don’t wanna live in this space anymore.”
The picture they paint is stunningly realistic. While many bands will use similar themes, they typically present hope. Amongst the Giants eschews that trend to portray the reality many are living: seeming hopelessness. There isn’t always a happy ending and, for many, they struggle to see hope that things will get better.
The remedy, or relief, that is offered in the lyrics is to have some sort of foundation to cling to: “Get a grip with yourself, plant your feet on the ground… Find your center and breathe, before you drown.”
Without presenting a disingenuous hope, these words point to some form of stability. By having something to remain firmly planted to, something to center oneself on, it is possible to not be completely overwhelmed. Possible, but not easy. It is a challenging song to listen to, but the starkness of the lyrics matches the emptiness felt by so many. Undoubtedly, many will relate to this track and feel a sense of commonality because the band refused to shy away from what is a harsh reality.
While they have yet to announce the release date, a comment on Facebook has confirmed that their next work is an EP. To be sure that you don’t miss more from this group, be sure you’re following them on Facebook, and Instagram. “Black Box” is available on Apple Music, Spotify, and most other platforms.
For similar sounds, check out: Phinehas, Memphis May Fire, Bloodlines, and Haste the Day